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Sector applauds new funding model

Media Statement
For Immediate Release

15 September 2009

Sector applauds new funding model

ComVoices, an independent network of Tangata Whenua and Community and Voluntary Sector organisations, has applauded the Government’s announcement today of a new funding model for service organisations receiving money from the Ministry of Social Development (MSD).

Minister of Social Development and Employment, Hon Paula Bennett, said the new ‘high-trust’ funding model would fund organisations through a single contract, and let service organisations decide how their funding was best allocated.

The current model is for Ministries to fund organisations using individual contracts for services e.g. budgeting advice or child services, which can result in one organisation having several contracts with the same agency.

The high-trust funding model requires regular communication between Government and the Sector but only requires formal reporting once a year.

Ric Odom, Chief Executive of YMCA says, “Cutting down on the amount of administration we have to complete to apply for funding and cutting down on the time spent reporting is crucial.

“Our strong relationships with government ensure we will be accountable to clients and our funding sources but this model gives us the flexibility to spend more time where we’re needed most – helping New Zealanders”, XX said.

Robin Gunston, Director of Prison Fellowship New Zealand said the high-trust model was a signal from Government that they understand the value of the Sector and its enormous skill-base.

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“The not for profit Sector can offer services often more cost effectively than the State can”, he said.

“This announcement signals that Government and the Sector are beginning to work together on strengths-based partnerships. I very much look forward to seeing this model being developed, and being introduced into other government departments too,” he said.

The ComVoices group welcomed the new funding model’s holistic approach, and while in its early, pilot, stage said it had great promise.

Robyn Scott, Executive Director of Philanthropy New Zealand said, “This model allows not for profit service organisations to have the flexibility to decide how their funding can be used best to serve the immediate and long-term needs of their communities.

The ComVoices group, which is comprised of advocacy groups, as well as service delivery organisations, sounded a caution that as the model was rolled out, the government should take care to include a wide brief for its funding.

Wendi Wicks, National Policy Researcher for the Disabled People’s Assembly (DPA) said, “We look forward to working with the Minister to establish how advocacy groups can also work under this model.”

ComVoices also acknowledge Minister Tariana Turia and her work in Government advocating for collaboration and for her championing of systems that allow the Community and Voluntary Sector to work more holistically, and to their strengths.


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